Chandigarh: With the announcement of the name of Rajasthan BJP leader and former Member of Parliament V.P. Singh Badnore as the next Governor of Punjab, the poll-bound state will get a regular Governor after a gap of over 18 months.
Badnore will take over the reins from Haryana Governor Kaptan Singh Solanki, who was holding additional charge of Punjab after the last Governor Shivraj Patil’s term ended in January 2015.
However, Badnore has not been given the crucial charge of Administrator of Union Territory of Chandigarh, which was held by all previous Punjab Governors over the past 32 years.
Reports said that firebrand former IAS officer and now Kerala Bharatiya Janata Party leader Alphons K.J. has been appointed the new full-time, independent Administrator of Chandigarh.
The Narendra Modi government had not been able to find a regular Governor for Punjab after Shivraj Patil, a former Union Home Minister, completed his term on January 21, 2015.
After Patil’s tenure ended, names of senior BJP leaders like Vijay Kumar Malhotra, union minister Najma Heptulla and others were doing the rounds for the post of Punjab Governor.
Punjab is gearing up for crucial Assembly elections in February, 2017 with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) posing a challenge to the traditional Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP alliance and the Congress.
The Akali Dal-BJP alliance has been in power in the state since 2007.
Badnore, a four-time MLA from Rajasthan, was first elected to the Lok Sabha from Bhilwara Parliamentary constituency and retained the seat in 2004. In 2010, Badnore was elected to the Rajya Sabha.